Case Study July 2023

This is a case study from a practice we sold in 2022:-
Fees sold£75,000WhereBristol
Time scale2 monthsType of PracticeSole Practitioner
Payment4 TranchesHow paid10%, 25%, 25% 40%
Multiple1.1 x feesWhen paidComp, 3 mths, 6 mths & 18 mths
Offers2 offersOffice & staffOffice shut – no staff
ResultsHaving a new house built post sale

In August of 2022 we sold an accountancy practice for Mr W.  He was based in Bristol and had been thinking about his options.  He  was seriously considering putting his practice on the market, but there were various routes he could take. 

Mr W did not feel that he had the right to sell his clients, nor did he believe that his portfolio would be of interest to anyone.  He also did not think that there was such a thing as a perfect buyer out there.  But he was proved 100% wrong on all three counts. 

Mr W found out about Draper Hinks from the Newsletters sent to him over the years which always sounded very positive, so he got in touch.  An appointment was made for him to speak to Nicola who made him realise that selling his fees was actually the best thing he could do for his clients compared to just giving them notice to find somewhere to go. He had to be persuaded that it was ok for him to benefit from the sale because that did not sit well with him at all.

At Draper Hinks we do understand that it is a difficult decision to sell your practice.  We give our vendors the space to work out their best time scale for putting their practice on the market.  Mr W said that the team at Draper Hinks “understands the whole process including how emotional it can be and the fact that he had never been down this road before”.  Some potential vendors take years before they are ready to sell their practice and retire.  Every person’s situation is individual to themselves and they are treated with that in mind. 

Nicola set up a Zoom Coaching Call with Mr W.  He said “the Coaching Call was superb.  It gave me structure, kept the conversations relevant, gave me the questions I needed, gave me checkpoints at certain times during the meetings and most of all settled my nerves.  “Without the Coaching Call, I would have been extremely nervous and the meeting with the buyers may have been inconclusive.”

At Draper Hinks we like to set up a Meeting Day for our vendors.  This is where the seller can meet with potential buyers on a one-to-one basis throughout the day.  We keep the number to a manageable level and in this case the opportunity was over-subscribed. 

Mr W chose a buyer from the offers sent in and said “As it turned out (exactly as Nicola had hoped) I absolutely clicked with one of the 5 potential buyers I met on the Meeting Day.  I quickly realised that he and his firm were perfect for my clients and fortunately he felt the same.  The main thing was that I could imagine most of my clients dealing with this individual (and other members of his senior team)  and I could tell from our conversations that the rest of the firm had the same professional but casual relaxed manner (that I hadn’t realised I was looking for) as he had handpicked most of them.”

When asked what he was going to do when he completed, Mr W said, “My wife and I have designed and are having a new home built next year and we hope to travel to several countries on our list and stay for longer than a week due to my client deadlines!”  We wish him well in the future.